fab·ric | \ˈfa-brik \

Definition of fabric 

1a : structure, building

b : underlying structure : framework the fabric of society

2 : an act of constructing : erection specifically : the construction and maintenance of a church building

3a : structural plan or style of construction

b : texture, quality used chiefly of textiles

c : the arrangement of physical components (as of soil) in relation to each other

4a : cloth sense 1a

b : a material that resembles cloth

5 : the appearance or pattern produced by the shapes and arrangement of the crystal grains in a rock

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Examples of fabric in a Sentence

The curtains are made of expensive fabric. scarves made of woven fabrics the fabric of the community
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Recent Examples on the Web

In a building already struggling with the usual trials of age, the heating problems pulled at the delicate fabric of this community. Anya Van Wagtendonk, Philly.com, "To save the world, first they must save a building in West Philly," 12 July 2018 To retreat from those principles is damaging to the fabric of our country and to our students’ learning. BostonGlobe.com, "Trump to scrap Obama-era affirmative action guidelines," 3 July 2018 The historic state capital of Annapolis is draped in grief from the attack at the local newspaper that killed the journalists who chronicled soccer games, art exhibits and the fabric of small-city life. Fox News, "The Latest: Priest highlights work of 5 slain journalists," 30 June 2018 Thanks to the synthetic fabric, these shorts do just fine in the water and dry in minutes. Jakob Schiller, Outside Online, "The 6 Best Men's Shorts for Summer," 11 June 2018 Choosing the right bedding boils down to the fabrics. Banu Ibrahim, CNN Underscored, "The right bedding can help you sleep soundly on hot summer nights," 29 May 2018 If the fabric has three or more colors, your design will be a little harder but will have a richer look. Jennifer Adams, Philly.com, "Ask Jennifer Adams: Mixing and matching fabric patterns for a vintage look," 13 July 2018 From budget hearings, city council meetings and local crime, to neighborhood schools, community groups and local personalities, the fabric of our lives as a community is strengthened and preserved through the work of a free press. Mary Schneidau Sullivan, Laurel Leader, "Keeping local news important [Old Town," 6 July 2018 Yet even in France, where a steak-frites is part of the national culinary identity and livestock-rearing the very fabric of rural life, consumption of red meat has been on the decline. The Economist, "French vegans are tormenting France’s butchers," 5 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fabric.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of fabric

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for fabric

borrowed from Middle French & Medieval Latin; Middle French fabrique "act of construction, something created or constructed, the created world, structure, construction and maintenance of a church," borrowed from Medieval Latin fabrica, going back to Latin, "process of making something, craft, art, workshop," noun derivative from *fabricus "of a craftsman," from fabr-, faber "craftsman, smith" (perhaps going back to dialectal Indo-European *dhabh-r- —perhaps of non-Indo-European origin— whence also Armenian darbin "smith," from *dhabh-r-sneh2) + -icus -ic entry 1

Note: The Latin derivative fabrica may have been shortened from fabrica ars, perhaps literally "smith's craft, smith's place of work." The base *dhabh-r- has been compared with Gothic gadaban "to happen, be suitable" and a host of related words (see daft), though the semantic link is tenuous.

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Statistics for fabric

Last Updated

16 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for fabric

The first known use of fabric was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for fabric



English Language Learners Definition of fabric

: woven or knitted material

: the basic structure of something


fab·ric | \ˈfa-brik \

Kids Definition of fabric

2 : the basic structure the fabric of society

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Comments on fabric

What made you want to look up fabric? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to reject or criticize sharply

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